For those of you who subscribe to Fantasy Football Playoffs starting in Week 14, Week 13 marks your last chance to get into the dance. In Week 12, Phillip Rivers and Rishard Matthews paid dividends meanwhile, Rashad Jennings and Gary Barnidge disappointed. I can do better but I can’t account for Sterling Shepard getting zero targets. Yeah… that one cost me too. Let’s set those fantasy football lineups.
Fantasy Football Start/Sit – Week 13
Start – Phillip Rivers vs Buccaneers
I have a thing for quarterbacks that consistently make plays from the pocket. They play a long time at a high level. With that being said I’m going back to the “Phillip Rivers Well.” I was in attendance for the Seattle/Tampa Bay contest in Week 12 and Seattle’s offense never got on track. Maybe jet lag had something to do with Russell Wilson’s pedestrian performance but the Bucs played fast, the crowd was raucous, and Seattle’s offensive line was abysmal. The Chargers offensive line isn’t exactly a juggernaut but they have performed better than the Seahawks group and for my money no quarterback is better with bodies flying around him than Rivers. I’ll wager the Bucs struggle to get to Rivers and fail to hold up on the back end as they travel out west to face the Chargers.
- Colin Kaepernick vs Bears
- Matthew Stafford vs Saints
- Russell Wilson vs Panthers
Sit – Paxton Lynch vs Jaguars
Trevor Siemian is out and I know the Jags are in the basement but I don’t trust Paxton Lynch. In his Week 5 start he took six sacks and threw an INT against the currently 32nd ranked pass defense in the Atlanta Falcons. I expect the Broncos to lean on their rushing attack and sticky defense against the Jags who have allowed the 4th fewest passing yards per game but are in the bottom third in terms of stopping the run.
Start – Carlos Hyde vs Bears
In a matchup between cellar dwellers there could be two impressive performances by each teams’ lead-back. The Bears have been decent against the run this season but Hyde and Colin Kaepernick should run the read option to perfection against the Bears who will be without both their starting inside linebackers Jerrell Freeman (suspension) and Danny Trevathan (injury). Matt Barkley put up fantasy worthy numbers last week despite an abysmal collective performance by his receiving corps but something tells me the game flow will allow Hyde to get 22-26 touches and find pay dirt in this contest. Over his last two contests Hyde is averaging a very healthy 4.75 yards per carry and four receptions per game. He’s their best offensive weapon and the Bears defense is a M.A.S.H. unit. Start him.
- Jordan Howard vs 49ers
- Jeremy Hill vs Eagles
- LeGarrette Blount vs Rams
- Dion Lewis vs Rams
- Theo Riddick vs Saints
Frank Gore vs Jets
I love Frankie and it’s been a dismal year for the New York Jets but there’s one thing (only thing) they do very well and that’s stop the run, 3rd best in the NFL and the Colts aren’t moving anyone up front.
Start – Donte Moncrief vs Jets
It’s been a mixed bag for Donte Moncrief in 2016. A trendy breakout target heading into fantasy drafts; he’s dealt with injury early in the season and the Colts have struggled to keep Andrew Luck upright. That being said, Moncrief has a touchdown grab in every game he’s finished this season (5) and the Jets STILL haven’t figured out how to defend the pass. I expect the Jets’ stout run defense to make Indy one dimensional (doesn’t have to be stout) and as a result Luck will chuck plenty of targets to Moncrief and fellow wideout T.Y. Hilton.
- All Saints Receivers vs Lions
- Marquess Wilson vs 49ers
- Marvin Jones vs Saints
- Jamison Crowder vs Cardinals
- Tyreek Hill vs Falcons
Kelvin Benjamin vs Seahawks
Richard Sherman was embarrassed last week matched up against Mike Evans on the road. However, this week against Carolina at home, the 12th Man will be in play, Earl Thomas is expected back in the lineup and Sherman I’m sure will bounce back. I wouldn’t surprise if Benjamin found the end-zone but he’s I would avoid Kelvin Benjamin in Week 13 assuming Sherman shadows him.
Start – Eric Ebron vs Saints
Eric Ebron has burned my hands on more than one occasion throughout his career. Most recently Thanksgiving Day where he was held without a catch on a paltry lone target. However, that whiff from Ebron actually marks the exception to the rule in 2016 and I fully expect him to at least match Lance Kendricks’ (4/51/1) output against New Orleans in Week 12.
- C.J. Friedorowicz vs Packers
- Antonio Gates vs Buccaneers
- Jermaine Gresham vs Redskins
Jared Cook vs Texans
Cook’s role in the Packers’ offense is as volatile and inconsistent as his play throughout his career. Houston held Antonio Gates and Hunter Henry to 2/20/1 combined in Week 12. Look elsewhere.
Defense to stream
Baltimore Ravens vs Dolphins
You could start either defense in this one. Despite the recent success in Miami, the Ravens will make the Phins one dimensional, they get their top cornerback Jimmy Smith back and Ryan Tannehill will come back to earth a bit.
Good luck everyone except for my opponents obviously.